Rain: You talked so much last time, this time I should get to start.
Sebastian peels a grape and slips it into his mouth.
Rain: We read Divergent by Veronica Roth. Did you know that right now it has 44,555 reviews on Amazon? That’s so freaking many!
Sebastian: And I’m not really sure why. The whole book was rather silly and juvenile.
Rain: It’s a young adult book. It’s not aimed at old grouches like you.
Sebastian: It should still make sense.
Sebastian: So you admit it didn’t really make sense. Then why did you like it so much?
Rain: I didn’t say I liked it that much, but I enjoyed it.
Sebastian peels another grape.
Rain: The idea was unique and interesting. A society divided into factions based on personality types?
Sebastian: It was derivative and it would never work. People aren’t that straightforward.
Rain: Shut up and eat your grapes. So it had a big idea. Like it or hate it.
Sebastian: Hate it.
Rain throws a grape at him.
Sebastian: You clearly have nothing to say about this book except that you kind of liked it, so let explain what I think it has going for it.
Rain crams a handful of grapes into her mouth. She chews and pieces fall out.
Sebastian: Wish fulfillment. Take a plain, self-effacing girl and have her join a bunch of hooligans. Make her brave and make her special. Like, mystically special. Then have her handsome instructor fall for her. This is every teenage girl’s wet dream.
Sebastian: It’s cheap entertainment. Empty calories.
Rain: Ah, so you admit it was entertaining.
Sebastian: Not so much for me, but for some people. You know what else I thought was interesting–and I’ve been thinking about this a lot recently.
Rain: I’m sure you’re going to tell me, probably at great length.
Sebastian: The way character was conveyed. Because their society was built around people’s personalities, the characters spent a lot of time talking about each other’s personality. It happened naturally and I rather liked it, though it was a little crude.
Rain: I thought you’d hate that aspect.
Sebastian: Well, I didn’t. Now stop eating my grapes. Are we going to talk about the other books.
Sebastian reaches into the bowl for grapes and his hand comes out empty.
Rain: Yes. We read The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins. We started at 8:30pm and didn’t turn out the light until we’d finished reading it. I don’t know about you, but I didn’t regret reading so late one bit.
Sebastian: Boris says we finally went to sleep at 12:50am.
Rain: That’s the book they were talking about when they said you won’t be able to put it down. I didn’t think it would be my kind of book at all, but the fact it’s a mundane genre didn’t matter.
Sebastian: The writing was excellent. It was one of the few books I’ve read recently in which I wasn’t pulled out of the story by clunky prose. Though the ending was rather obvious.
Rain: What are you talking about? You had no idea who did it until right at the end.
Sebastian: I knew it wasn’t the obvious person.
Rain: That doesn’t mean anything. It never is. That was a Good book–with a random, annoying capital G. Though I can’t say I liked the story that much and all the sleeping around was icky.
Sebastian: It isn’t art if half the characters aren’t sleeping around.
Rain: You belong in a museum. Or an asylum.
Sebastian: I’m going to let that slide because if I don’t we won’t have time to talk about A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman.
Rain: Not messing around, are you?
Sebastian: I’m hungry.
Rain: I don’t know what I thought of that book. Not much happened, but that was kind of okay because parts were very funny and the cat was awesome.
Sebastian: Things happened. You don’t need dragons to have a good plot.
Rain: But they help.
Sebastian: Shut up about dragons. A Man Called Ove was well written, warm, and witty–
Rain: Even though not everyone was sleeping around?
Sebastian: (goes red) It’s Swedish. Different rules apply for art over there.
Rain: It was about a grumpy old git. It was…
Sebastian: The word you’re looking for is “heartwarming”.
Rain: Now I’m sorry I didn’t force you to talk about The 5th Wave. And I’m glad I ate your grapes.
Have you read any of these books? What did you think?
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